For those who don't know, here's "flipping the classroom" in a nutshell:
- The idea is to maximize our use of students' face-to-face time with the teacher in class.
- Typical classes (especially in Math) start with direct instruction from the teacher, then we take a little time to practice together and students do much of the individual practice for homework.
- Flipping the classroom is the idea of switching up the order of events. Students watch a video to introduce the new topic/skill for homework the night before the lesson.
- Then they come into class with notes and questions.
- The teacher can then spend almost the entire class time working with small groups on the skill, because there's no need to repeat the "lecture" or direct instruction portion of the lesson.
My other teammate and I started doing some research, and she started taking the same class. (I'm in grad school already, so I'm skipping out on the formal class for now!) The one thing we both learned through our classes and research is that it is most effective when you video yourself giving the direct instruction, instead of using videos from your curriculum, Khan Academy, Study Jams, etc. I could do a whole blog post on reasons for this, but that can come later on, if there's interest!
The idea of videoing lessons scared me. It seemed time consuming, and I thought I would have to learn new technology. Then I found Katie Gimbar's YouTube videos. She makes it look so easy! Her videos are relatively low-tech, with minimal editing, but they are so effective!
Last week, my teammate and I videoed three math lessons, and created a website for our students to watch them on at home. It took us less than 30 minutes per video, including creating the PowerPoint that we use to show notes while we teach and videoing the entire lesson.
We have now watched two videos in class, and practiced taking notes together. Tonight, my students have their first video homework, so I am both excited and nervous to see how it went when they come in tomorrow!
After the video on Friday, TWO of my students told me that they like my videos much better than the ones we were using before (from our math curriculum). I was surprised because mine lack all of the animation and "fun stuff" that theirs include. I asked them why, and both answers were basically that it's easier to understand, because they're used to the way I teach! Talk about making this teacher's day!
If you're flipping your class, or are interested, I would love to have a teacher buddy to share ideas with!